The one thing people come in contact with everyday in their homes is the floor. Having a beautiful and durable hardwood floor will bring years of joy to any home. Deciding on the best flooring for your home doesn’t have to be a difficult decision. Hardwood flooring has been around for centuries and has been one of the most dependable flooring options. With it’s ability to be stained, sanded and re-stained multiple times, hardwood flooring can become a great option in just about any environment. Hardwood floor refinishing is one of our most requested services. The needs of your specific situation will determine the best hardwood flooring option. The two most prominent types of hardwood flooring are solid wood floors and engineered wood floors. Corlew and Perry is Nashville’s first choice in both solid wood floors and engineered wood floors.
Solid Wood Flooring
Solid wood floors are made out of a solid piece of wood with no other layers involved from top to bottom. One primary advantage of using solid wood floors is the ability to sand and re-stain the wood multiple times. Since most solid wood floors come with a minimum 3/4″ thickness, re-sanding and finishing is much easier to accomplish. With the ability to sand and re-finish the floor multiple times comes a higher price tag. Solid wood floors come either unfinished or pre-finished. With unfinished wood, the floor must be sanded then finished then stained. It then requires a polyurethane coat to protect the floor. With pre-finished solid wood, no sanding, staining or polyurethane is required.
Engineered Wood Flooring
Engineered wood is a piece of wood that has multiple layers with the top most layer being of the highest quality. Since the wood is made of multiple layers and the grain on each layer runs in different directions, the wood is often more stable than solid hard wood floors and less resistant to changes in temperature and moisture. Engineered wood can be sanded and finished as well, but not as often as solid hard wood floors. Since the layers of wood are thinner the number of times it can be sanded is less than solid wood flooring. All engineered wood floors come pre-finished in several colors. Having the wood pre-finished means the sanding, finishing, staining and polyurethane coating is already on the wood saving the time and money involved in doing those steps.
Most Popular Hardwood Flooring Options
There are several different species of wood to choose from when deciding which type of wood floor you want to install. The two most prominent choices of wood used for wood flooring in the United States are oak and maple with oak being the more popular of the two. Maple is harder wood than oak, but both are very durable and sufficient for installation in a number of uses. Maple is often used in gym flooring and bowling lanes as well. Oak wood comes in two main variations: red oak and white oak. Other woods include ash, bamboo (technically a grass but similar hardness as oak) and cherry. Below is a simple list describing the most popular hardwoods installed today:
- Red Oak - slightly pink in color -grain is more pronounced than white oak – open, porous wood – easy to finish
- White Oak – slightly browner than red oak – grain is more subtle than red oak – easy wood to finish – stains are normally darker
- Maple – wood is more “whitish” in color – generally lightens up darker rooms – closed pores – smooth wood – should be professionally finished
- Bamboo - actually a grass and not a wood – same hardness as oak – only available as engineered wood
- Cherry – a lighter, reddish brown with closed pores – tough wood, softer than oak – easy to work – attractive
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